The Westfield/Mayville Rotary Club recently bestowed Rotary International's highest honor, the Paul Harris Fellowship Award, on three individuals for their humanitarian contributions to society. Recipients of the award exemplify Rotary's motto, "Service Above Self" and its 4 Way Test which benefits others in various ways.
Deserving recipients were Marilyn Hemmer of Westfield, Steve Mawhir of Brocton and Sue Hammond, W/M Rotary member from North East.
Rotarian Dan Smith surprised Mrs. Hemmer after giving an account of her involvement in the community. They include serving as a board member of the Westfield Memorial Hospital Foundation and Hospital Auxiliary; volunteer for Red Cross Blood Bank, YWCA's Arts & Crafts Show, Westfield/Barcelona Chamber of Commerce; membership in the Westfield Women's Organization, Chautauqua County Historical Society and the Patterson Library.
At left, Marilyn Hemmer happily accepts a Paul Harris Fellowship Award from Westfield/Mayville Rotarian Dan Smith. At right, A third-level Paul Harris Fellow Award, a contribution level lapel pin, is graciously accepted by Sue Hammond from Rotarian Jim Wakeman.
In addition, Hemmer co-chaired Westfield's Lincoln Festival and Westfield's Christmas in the Village.
"Does this sound like Rotary's motto and benefit her fellow man to build goodwill and better friendships in the community," Smith asked and answered, "You bet it does!!!" Thus, he introduced a flabbergasted Marilyn Hemmer, who some time ago was named "Westfield's Woman of the Year" and a community service recognition from the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce.
Rotarian John Hertlein, Brocton Central School superintendent, told of Mawhir's dedication to the school while coping with family concerns. A self-employed carpenter, along with his father, Mawhir volunteer activities included building props for school musicals, volunteer assistant softball coach and volunteer chaperone for sporting playoff events and senior class trips.
During the past few years, Mawhir has confronted his daughter's battle with cancer, the death of his father and the cancer death of his closest sister. Most recently, his wife, Sylvia, has been receiving major cancer treatments at Roswell.
"Among all this, Steve still volunteers to help staff and students (at BCS) as a way for him to keep a positive attitude about all the great things in life," Hertlein said. "After reading the criterion for this award, Steve's name came immediately to me as one who lives by the Rotary Four Way Test and Service Above Self."
The Paul Harris Fellowship, named for Rotary founder Paul Harris, expresses appreciation for a $1,000 contribution to the humanitarian and educational programs of the Rotary Foundation. Rotary International further recognizes contributors for every additional $1,000 donation, ergo Rotarian Sue Hammond was honored for her third level Paul Harris Fellow.
Hammond's contributions to the foundation allay suffering, improve living conditions and provide educational opportunities for people somewhere in the world. "This is a truly selfless action," said Rotarian Jim Wakeman, who recognized her contribution level. "Please accept congratulations and sincere appreciation for your commitment to our common goals of world understanding and peace."